As a professional, a registered nurse and Legal Nurse Consultant, I have strong feelings that those that have taken on a career as a registered nurse or Legal Nurse Consultant, demonstrate and own a strong ethical value system in both their professional and personal lives. Ones’ behavior, professional and personally, impacts the reputation of the profession that they represent.
I personally believe that The American Association of Legal Nurse Consultants is the National Organization that officially represents the Legal Nurse Consulting Profession. The American Association of Legal Nurse Consultants (AALNC) establishes their ethical standard for the specialty practice of Legal Nurse Consultant and provides a guide for legal nurse consultants to use in ethical analysis and decision-making in their practice. These standards provide guidelines for the professional performance and behavior of legal nurse consultants. The esteem of this specialty practice of nursing results from the competence and integrity of its practitioners. The AALNC set forth this code to impart its ethical expectations for legal nurse consultants.
The legal nurse consultant maintains professional nursing competence.
- The legal nurse consultant is a Registered Nurse and maintains an active nursing license. The legal nurse consultant is knowledgeable about the current scope and standards of legal nursing practice and advocates for these standards.
The legal nurse consultant uses informed judgment, objectivity and individual professional competence as criteria when accepting assignments.
- The legal nurse consultant does not purport to be competent in matters in which he or she has limited knowledge or experience. Only services that meet high personal and professional standards are offered or rendered. The legal nurse consultant is accountable for his or her decisions and actions.
The legal nurse consultant does not engage in activities that could be construed as the unauthorized practice of law.
- The legal nurse consultant refrains from marketing services to the lay public and refrains from working on medical-legal cases or claims without attorney involvement.
The legal nurse consultant’s work products and opinions are free from bias.
- The legal nurse consultant does not allow personal attitudes or individual differences to interfere with professional performance and practice. Financial and/or other relationships that may give an appearance of or create a conflict of interest will be considered and disclosed when practicing.
The legal nurse consultant performs his or her work with the highest degree of integrity.
- Integrity is exemplified by uprightness, honesty, and sincerity. The legal nurse consultant applies these attributes to the specialty practice. Integrity is a personal and sacred trust and the standard against which the legal nurse consultant must ultimately measure all actions and decisions. Honest errors and differences of opinion may occur, but deceit, poor judgment, and/or lack of principles are unacceptable.
The legal nurse consultant respects and protects the privacy and confidentiality of the individuals involved in a medical-legal case or claim.
- The legal nurse consultant uses confidential materials with discretion and abides by applicable statutes, regulations, and professional codes of conduct that pertain to confidentiality. The legal nurse consultant does not use any case information for personal gain.
The legal nurse consultant maintains standards of personal conduct that reflect honorably upon the profession of nursing and the specialty practice of legal nurse consulting.
- The legal nurse consultant abides by all local, state and federal laws and other regulatory requirements. The legal nurse consultant who knowingly becomes involved in unethical or illegal activities negates professional responsibility for personal interest or personal gain. Such activities jeopardize the public confidence and trust in the nursing profession and are unacceptable to the profession and to this specialty nursing practice.
The legal nurse consultant integrates ethical considerations into his or her practice.
- The legal nurse consultant works to achieve client goals while upholding the responsibility to provide accurate information, independent and sound opinions, and professional recommendations. The legal nurse consultant contributes to resolving ethical issues in practice; reports illegal, incompetent or impaired practice; and promotes respect for the judicial system.
Each legal nurse consultant’s personal commitment to this Code of Ethics and Conduct safeguards the continued honor and integrity of both the nursing profession and this specialty nursing practice.
Adopted and copyrighted © April 1992
Revised 2005, 2009, 2014
By the American Association of Legal Nurse Consultants
For more information, contact:
American Association of Legal Nurse Consultants